(I’ve been dealing with some serious issues these past few weeks, so my posting has suffered. My apologies to both my colleagues and the readership. The following state of affairs has been something I’ve wanted to chime in on for some time. It may be a bit dated, but no less relevant.)
If I took fifty black buttons and fifty white buttons and tossed them up in the air, some of each color would most likely end up in clusters on the floor.
That seems to have happened with the recent ethics charges concerning black lawmakers.
Never mind that, in the same time, comparable white lawmakers haven’t been cited for violations. That’s just irrelevant. Or so it would seem.
For whatever reasons, a cluster of black members of congress have allegedly violated house ethics rules at a coincidental time, and it doesn’t look good for them, or their party.
Their black colleague’s reactions to these charges don’t exactly scream “Drain the swamp,” either.
“There’s a “dual standard, one for most members and one for African-Americans,” said one member of the Congressional Black Caucus, speaking on the condition of anonymity.”
This person claims this with a straight face, even as the first black President sits in the White House, and both houses of congress are controlled by Democrats.
Come on, Mr./Mrs. Anonymous blowhard: Man-up, take the skirt off, and use your actual name.
At least try to come up with some reasoning that fits the times. One which doesn’t produce an eye-roll everytime you trot out that type of racist accusation.
“A lot of people have been raising concerns [about the OCE], and I support them,” House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.) told The Hill in October. “At some point in the not-so-distant future, these concerns will have to be addressed.”
There. That’s more like it.
Yes, Mr. Clyburn. It is a gigantic cosmic political conspiracy against black lawmakers, especially during a time when your party has had majority rule in both houses since 2007.
The irony is these obvious racial insinuations belch up from a group that, by its very nature, is built on race itself. BLACKS ONLY! They seem to have decided that no matter the actions committed by their members, the color of their skin supercedes or nullifies the possible validity of their crimes.
Recently, Representatives Maxine Waters, Charlie Rangel, and Gregory Meeks have been the stand out players in this unraveling situation.
Another black lawmaker, Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-N.Y.) — a close Rangel confidant — has been caught up in an ongoing Justice Department criminal probe involving some of Queens’s most powerful politicians. Meeks has denied any wrongdoing, and, like Rangel, blamed his problems on the National Legal and Policy Center, a conservative watchdog group.
Sen. Roland Burris (D-Ill.), the only African-American in the Senate, was admonished by the Senate Ethics Committee last November for “incorrect, inconsistent, misleading or incomplete information” over his appointment by Blagojevich to Obama’s seat.
Put the fact that they are black aside. They are DEMOCRATS, and so is the congressional majority, who, I’m sure, are thrilled to be investigating their own party members leading to an upcoming midterm election.
It’s not as though comparable white members of congress have escaped the “bi-partisan” eye of the Office of Congressional or Senatorial Ethics.
Take, for example, Nevada Sen. David Ensign, who has been skinned, not for misappropriation of funds, not for steering bailout money to a bank which could be of financial benefit to him, but for having an extra-marital affair.
Same with Louisiana Senator David Vitter.
How about Alaska Senator Ted Stevens who, despite being accused of ethics charges for various “gifting,” narrowly lost re-election. This all had an impact on the race leading up to the election, and was a permanent topic of discussion on the Sunday talk circuits. It was found, however, that after he lost the election by just over 3,000 votes, the judge investigating decided to “set aside the verdict and throw out the indictment, based on what he called the worst case of prosecutorial misconduct he’d ever seen.”
How nice. How convenient.
Republican Rep. Pete Visclosky is being investigated for some illegal lobbying firm he was involved with.
“Two other white lawmakers, Reps. Eric Massa (D-Bellvue.) and Mark Souder (R-Ind.), resigned this year under ethical clouds. Massa left Congress after POLITICO reported he was under investigation by the ethics committee for sexually harassing male staffers, while Sounder quickly departed after admitting a long-running extra-martial affair with a part-time aide. The findings from the Massa investigation have yet to be released by the ethics panel, although he is no longer within its jurisdiction.
OK. Massa is a nut.
Newt Gingrich was also the target of the Ethics committee, for having an extra-marital affair, which eventually helped lead to his loss of the House Speakership.
Any member of an elected office, no matter their race or party, if found guilty, should suffer the consequences.
Despite the insistence of the Congressional Black Caucus, being black does not automatically make you a target.
And it certainly doesn’t give you a pass to engage in such suspect activities. When you get called to the carpet for them, whipping out the race card to discredit whatever it is you’re accused of, proven yet or not, does not somehow make you immune.
It does, however, make you sound like an idiot who wields it like a tool of intimidation to deflect legitimate scrutiny.